An unfolding development

Expedeon and Protein Discovery join forces to provide advanced products for protein research

Lloyd Dunlap
CAMBRIDGE, U.K.—Expedeon Ltd. and Protein Discovery Inc.will merge to provide both the "razor and blades" of advanced products forprotein research. The new company, bearing the Expedeon name, intends to be aglobal supplier of protein analysis and purification products used by thousandsof scientists worldwide.
 
 
Prior to the merger, Protein Discovery was a privately heldlife sciences company that develops and commercializes specialized samplepreparation products for protein analysis by mass spectrometry. Its customerbase includes academic, government and pharmaceutical scientists involved inprotein research and biotherapeutic development.
Founded in 2001, Protein Discovery has developed a suite ofproducts that address key challenges in protein analysis. The company'sflagship product, the GELFREE 8100 Fractionation System, is said to be thefirst instrument that partitions complex protein mixtures into user-selectable,liquid-phase molecular weight fractions. The apparatus can purify up to eightsamples simultaneously. Unlike other electrophoresis-based systems, the unitproduces a soluble fraction for analysis by mass spectrometry. The technologyallows researchers to look at the whole protein, not fragments, to pick upsmall changes and differences. The system has achieved rapid market adoptionand was recently highlighted in a publication in Nature.
 
 
Protein Discovery's proprietary consumables, including FASPProtein Digestion kits and PPS Silent Surfactant, allow scientists to enhancetheir data quality and improve their protein analysis workflows, according tothe media release announcing the merger.
Expedeon, also privately held, provides tools and reagentsfor protein discovery and analysis, enabling advances in protein research anddrug development.
 
 
Dr. Heikki Lanckriet, founder and CEO of Expedeon, will alsobe CEO of the new Expedeon. Prior to the merger, Expedeon was already gainingmarket share rapidly, he states, with double-digit annual grow as a provider ofsimple, rapid and effective solutions for protein-based research andproduction. The company's patented products include solutions for proteinseparation, quantitation, visualization, purification, protection andrefolding. The products include RunBlue electrophoresis precast gels,InstantBlue protein stain and Nvoy protein stabilization products, which areused to enhance protein stability and solubility.Applications include soluble expression of aggregation prone protein such asmembrane proteins, protein refolding, protein concentration and purification,crystallisation, NMR and mass spectrometry.
 
 
Expedeon sells bothdirectly to and through an extensive partner network around the world. With theaddition of Protein Discovery, Lanckriet views the new Expedeon as commanding"gateway technology" to energize future growth.
 
 
The group will remain headquartered in Cambridge, and ChuckWitkowski, founder and CEO of Protein Discovery, will join Expedeon's board ofdirectors. Lanckriet notes that U.S. manufacturing operations will likely beconsolidated at Expedeon's existing San Diego facility.
 
 
"This transaction represents an important step towards ourstrategic goal of becoming a premier, global provider of innovative productsolutions for protein analysis," says Lanckriet. "Protein Discovery's talentedteam has built a business with highly innovative products that are consideredbest-in-class in their respective product segments. Combined with Expedeon'sindustry-leading products and extensive market channels, Expedeon will offereven greater value to scientists engaged in protein analysis."
 
Witkowski adds, "By combining our businesses, we have anopportunity to create substantial value for our customers, shareholders andother key stakeholders as we extend our innovative solutions to customersaround the world."
 
 
Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
 


Lloyd Dunlap

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